Tuesday, 13 August 2013

Tuesday's News And Notes

There has been a number of small news stories and notes that have broken over the last week or so regarding various hockey-related matters. HBIC tries to keep its finger on the pulse of the hockey world, so we'll look at a number of these stories today as I provide a little insight from my perspective. You're welcome to comment below on any and all topics, so let's start breaking down these stories right now.

Gone Too Soon

Absolutely horrible news out of Quebec as a young man by the name of Jordan Boyd passed away on the ice on Monday during training camp with the QMJHL's Acadie-Bathurst Titan. According to reports, Jordan felt "some discomfort during a wind sprint" during his first day of Titan training camp at a rink in Bathurst, New Brunswick. The young man collapsed shortly thereafter, and was pronounced dead at a hospital later in the day. The cause of death is still unknown, but the fact that this young man passed away playing a game that he loved is tragic and sad. While he was given a clean bill of health by team doctors, the loss of a life while training is hard to fathom. HBIC wishes Jordan's family and friends its deepest condolences, and know that both Jordan and yourselves are in my thoughts today. RIP Jordan.

Playing For Money

Reports on Monday have restricted Canucks free agent Chris Tanev entertaining offers from both the KHL and the Swiss Elite League for alleged big money. Tanev is 23 years-old, and is considered to be a defensive defenceman. With the Canucks tight against the salary cap, it appears that this stand-off will result in a solid, young defenceman jumping across the pond for a chance to play for big money.
Look, I'm all for players getting fair market value, but let's be realistic here when it comes to Chris Tanev. In 92 career games with the Canucks, Tanev has posted a mere two goals and eight assists. It's not like he's a PK Subban or a Kris Letang. If anyone pays him more than $2 million per season for however long, they are overpaying for a guy who hasn't supplanted anyone on Vancouver's blueline and who has yet to see anything close to his potential realized. Sometimes, you gotta take less for a shorter term to earn more in the long run, Chris. If your agent is telling you to hold out for more, it might be time to find a realistic agent.

He Can Coach, But Should He?

Reported on Monday by a couple of sources, former NHL goaltender Steve Weeks was hired by the Chicago Blackhawks as their goaltending coach. He'll work with Corey Crawford and Nikolai Khabibulin in trying to help the Blackhawks back to another Stanley Cup. Initially, I almost blew past this story, but then it occurred to me that the Blackhawks had brought in Steve Weeks as their goaltending coach!

Steve Weeks is probably a very competent coach, but his work over nine seasons with the Atlanta Thrashers really doesn't put him in a good light. Combine that with the fact that he was mostly a career back-up goalie and the fact that he played in 290 NHL games over 13 seasons while posting a 3.99 career GAA, and suddenly you wonder what he could teach the reigning Stanley Cup-winning goaltender and a Russian who has played in a number of big games over his career. Doesn't it seem like something is off here?

I suppose the old adage is true: those who can, do; those who cannot, teach.

Mystery Radio

It is with great honour that Beans and I get the opportunity to speak with Bob and Lynda MacPherson on The Hockey Show this week. Bob and Lynda are the parents of Duncan MacPherson, a New York Islanders prospect who went missing in 1989. Mr. and Mrs. MacPherson have agreed to appear on the show this week, and we'll be promoting the book written by Mr. John Leake about this terrible tragedy. If you're interested in a copy of this book, please click here to order either a physical copy or an e-book version. We're really excited to have the MacPhersons on the show this week, and we're happy they will tell their story about a man who has not been forgotten by this writer.

Everyone Hates The DMV

Finally, we end with a story that seems a little ridiculous, but it happened and it involves hockey. Sidney Crosby is feeling the heat from some Pennsylvania residents this week after jumping the queue to renew his license. Honestly, this seems like more of a non-story, but the fact that it made it to many news outlets shows that Crosby makes news off the ice as well.

Susan Campbell reportedly vented in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette on Saturday about how Sid the Kid jumped the line and renewed his license, thereby forcing Miss Campbell and others to wait an additional few minutes before they did the same thing. Her argument was, "He should have to sit and wait with everyone else". Sherry Davis, another person waiting in line when Crosby cut in front, stated, "He probably should have waited". Apparently unbeknownst to Miss Campbell and Miss Davis was that the Pennsylvania DMV has a policy in place that can allow celebrities to skip to the front of the line in order to cut down on disruptions.

Does anyone really think that if Crosby sat in the waiting area at the DMV that he wouldn't be mobbed by autograph seekers and people wanting photos? No, the guy deserves to be able to conduct his life like you or I, enjoying a small piece of privacy that we, the non-famous, seem to take for granted. Clearly, both Miss Campbell and Miss Davis recognized who cut them in line in order to report about this perceived injustice. What are the odds that they may have also asked him for an autograph or photograph if he had sat down beside them?

So don't be mad at Crosby for following a DMV policy that seems to have been ion place for some time. Be angry at the DMV if you like. But maybe be a little annoyed with yourselves, ladies. The reason he's allowed to cut in line is because people have mobbed celebrities before at the DMV. It's not his fault - that's who he is! As CBS Pittsburgh's Colin Dunlap says, "Take a number. Shut up. And wait your turn."

There are your recent headlines from the past few days. With training camps gearing up, there are still a number of free agents out there looking for homes, and there are still restricted free agents looking for a new contract. It will be interesting to see what happens with these players over the next few weeks as well, so keep your ears to the ground as we approach training camp.

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

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